Friday, 16 January 2015

Carvery

 On Boxing Day I caught the flu type virus that Poppy had before Christmas. It wiped me out for a few days and just as I thought I was getting better I was knocked off my feet again, this time with Labyrinthitis. I've spent the last two weeks feeling dizzy, drunk, disorientated, fatigued, weak and unable to do much at all. I've been bored out of my mind!
Since Wednesday though I've begun to feel a gradual improvement of symptoms and so today I ventured out for lunch with Tay, Katie, her friend Shannon and Thomas. We went for a carvery, ate too much food and talked about home schooling, something that I'm three months into doing with Elisha and feeling more and more drawn to with Poppy. Tay is also considering it with Thomas for various reasons. Once we'd finished gorging on the heap of food the kids ordered dessert, although the girls and their eyes that were bigger than their bellies were unable to eat more than a few mouthfuls!

Wednesday, 31 December 2014

Let It Go

A big fluffy onesie, Arthur keeping my feet warm, George Ezra in the background and a box of paracetamol ~ that's how I'm spending my New Year's Eve.
I've been floored by a virus since Boxing day so doing anything but mong tonight is out of the question, although if I were well, I'd no doubt be doing the same thing anyway.
New Year's Eve is my night to myself to reflect over the year that's passed and focus on the year that's coming up.
2014 will be known, universally, as the year of Frozen and that song. For me, it turns out, 2014 was also the year I 'Let It Go'.
As I look back over the events of the past 12 months it has been a non-stop round of endings, goodbyes and letting go.

  • I let go of various friendships and relationships, in some cases for someone else's benefit not mine, but it was the right thing to do.
  • I let go of 'stuff!' I had many occasions throughout the year when I had huge clear outs and just let all the crap go, leaving our home clutter and crap free.
  • I let go of guilt about an event that happened almost two decades ago.
  • I let go of old, negative thought patterns and stepped into a mindset and lifestyle of positive thinking. It was life changing.
  • I went to counselling and totally committed to working through some old, stubborn issues that were completely blighting my life. It took 6 months of really hard, soul searching work, deep understanding and forgiveness but I achieved it. I let go of the anger, hurt and pain once and for all.
  • I let go of my children! They challenged me more and more to let them go a little bit more, grow up and find their own way. It was not bloody easy but it was very necessary. In doing so, I have watched them flourish into the gorgeous, capable, wise, passionate young adults they are.
  • I let go of the Guinea pigs after I developed an allergy to them.
  • I let go of (almost) all control and learnt to trust my intuition and to trust life. That led me to situations I never thought possible and a whole new lease of life.
  • I let go of expectations and just started to accept and love people, things and life as they are. 
  • I let go of the massive fears I had about taking Elisha out of school and started homeschooling her. (I may also have let go of the overwhelming need to punch several of her teachers and headmaster in the face!!)
  • I let go of my need to change my life, instead I started to work with what I've already got and realised, by doing so, that it wasn't all that bad to start with.
  • I let go of old fears I had about letting people see me intimately and it really strengthened the friendships that are in my life. The friends I have now are as close to me as my family, simply because of the act of letting go of fear.
The last two months of 2014  have been a time of feeling a complete loss of connection to myself and experiencing an emptiness I didn't know how to fill but as 2015 begins I can see that all the time there's an emptiness, there's an available space to be filled and I'm taking the new year as the opportunity to create the year I 'let it in.' It seems the natural thing to do. I currently don't know what I'll be letting in but as I learnt over the past 12 months, I will trust life and know it will bring me the right things, situations and people.

As I really ponder my achievements over the last year I can see that my life has changed dramatically since this time last year. There have been some challenging moments but that's the way life should be, mostly it has been a year of enormous personal growth. Next year I am committing to letting in several things

  • Getting to know my body much better and becoming healthier, slowly but surely.
  • Throwing myself into the deep end in regards to a career. The culmination of several years of hard work and planning is coming to fruition and 2015 is the year I let it in and go for it.
  • Taking photos and blogging. I worked so hard on myself this year that I neglected a huge part of who I have been since 2007. 2015 will hopefully see a lot more photographs and much more heartfelt writing than over the last 12 months.
  • Dating. It's been a barren year on that front, 2015 is the time to rectify that. It's a time to let in some fun (clean) evenings in the form of dating.
  • Friends and family. My friendships and relationships have blossomed enormously in 2014. 2015 is the year I will keep this going even more, with drunken nights and knicker wetting laughter. I can't wait.
All in all, 2014 has been an amazing year. I'll remember it as the year I really got to know who I am and what I stand for in life and I'll start 2015 on a firmer footing because of it. Happy New Year!

Thursday, 25 December 2014

Christmas

 Despite the way I was feeling last night, today ended up being the best Christmas for a very long time. The day started by waking up slowly and naturally at 8am and it didn't feel that odd. I lounged around in bed on my laptop for half hour before getting up and starting to prepare dinner and relaxing on the sofa. The older kids came downstairs at around 10am and Ruby said how nice it was to have a lie in, they then watched some telly and we all just chilled out together listening to music and singing loudly, in Elisha's case.
At 2pm, with the dinner in the final stages, we went round to Barney's to pick Poppy up.
Once home, I finished the dinner, we sat down to eat and drink, lots in Jake's case, and then we began the present opening. I'd already paid for Jake to go to Amsterdam 2 months ago so he just got little nik naks but he was over the moon with the onesie I got him and the hazardous waste toilet roll! Ruby and Elisha both wanted money and Poppy had various presents including a toy foot spa, dvds, slush puppy maker and Barbie styling head. Arthur was delighted with his presents, although the toy frog was destroyed within the hour.
Jake went up to bed soon after, the alcohol, food and excitement proving too much for him and so Ruby, Elisha, Poppy and I sat and played bingo like the old ladies we are.
Afterwards, we all put our pjs on, snuggled on the sofas under quilts and watched Polar Express before the kids traipsed off to bed at 10pm, shattered after a long but relaxed day.
For me, it was undoubtedly the best Christmas I've had in years.



Wednesday, 24 December 2014

Unfamiliar Christmas


It's Christmas Eve. Jake is at the pub with Callum and George, Ruby is in bed watching a film, Elisha's in her room doing the same and Poppy is at Barney's until 2pm tomorrow. The mince pie and carrot didn't get put out and I didn't get to tuck Poppy into bed and try and calm her excitement down for her to sleep. It is the most un-christmassy Christmas Eve I have ever had. A Christmas eve without kids is not really a Christmas eve. It's just odd and a great reminder of how much my life has changed over the past year (mostly for the better apart from this), and while the deeper reason for Poppy's absence is a positive on one hand, on the other, it's the high price I'm now paying. Still, tomorrow I'll have all my babies together for dinner and opening of presents, even though it will happen 8 hours later than usual ~ better late than never.

Saturday, 20 December 2014

Table Decoration



I made my Christmas decoration today just in time for friends coming round for dinner tonight. Originally my decoration was going to be twigs and red berries but after a long walk in the woods last week which proved unfruitful, I changed to cranberries, candles and gerberas. However, it took visits to four different florists before I found orange gerberas and an hour to assemble it all. Now I have to hope it'll last until the big day.

Saturday, 29 November 2014

Tat-tastic Christmas

We put the Christmas decorations up today. Poppy and I did the trees, Ruby and Elisha did the rest of the house with a little bit of help from Jake for the decorations that needed a ladder.
By the time we'd all finished the house looked as though a rainbow had exploded everywhere and Ruby went round the house singing, "Christmas has thrown up in our house!"





Friday, 28 November 2014

Party Girls

Ruby and Beth went to a party tonight, all glammed up and looking gorgeous, armed with a bottle of Peach Schnapps and a request for me to pick them up at 2 am! At 12.30 they text asking me to collect them early and even better, they were still sober. Good!





Saturday, 1 November 2014

Babysitting

 Tay asked me to look after Thomas, Elliot and Mollie today as she was moving house. They came over at 11am and weren't going again until about 6.30pm so I spent the day trying to keep them busy when all they wanted to do was go home to their new house! We started the day bowling, with the tin cans we made yesterday, the kids loved it. They also played with the magnetic dartboard and out on the swings in the garden. Before long they were starving so we popped to McDonalds for lunch and then a bit more playing. When they started to get restless and arguing began a little between Tom and Elliot I bundled them all in the car and we went down to the beach at Hillhead and found the tide out, which meant lots of lovely sand to play in. Thomas wrote in the sand, "I love my family" and then they ran around playing hide and seek with a stone!
Mollie loves the camera so she did lots and lots of posing and photo bombing and then we went over to the park where the older ones played hide and seek for ages and Mollie went up and down the slide constantly and asked for more photos to be taken.
Once they all tired of that we went onto the field where the kids rolled down the hills, got covered in mud and raced each other around for half an hour before the wind picked up, it turned cold so we headed back home, via the shop for snacks and then a dvd. 
I loved having the kids over, as did Poppy. On the whole they were really well behaved and Mollie, who's always been shy with me, even came for a cuddle on the sofa just before it was time to go home. 



















Friday, 31 October 2014

Trickle Treating

 We started off Halloween with our usual tradition of pumpkin carving except this year, for the first time, Jake joined in as he had the day off work. Poppy did one scoop and started to gag at the smell so I scooped all the crap out for her and she did the carving. Jake scrapped the insides and then dumped them all over the table, scattering seeds all over the floor at the same time, much to Arthur's delight! Ruby and Elisha quietly worked away although Elisha did manage to break one of my knives, getting it stuck in the pumpkin! Once the carving was complete Poppy and I went to Tesco to buy a few bits we needed and then returned to paint tin cans ready for Halloween bowling.
In the evening Poppy and I dressed up as the wicked witch of the west in Poppy's case, and a scary old lady in mine, and went to Steph's for a Halloween party and trickle treating, as Poppy calls it.
When we got home we got in bed shattered and waited for Ruby to return from trick or treating with Morgan. She'd dressed as a skeleton and looked very scary!